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What matters to today’s parents who are buying cars

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on April 27, 2022

It probably comes as no surprise to learn that buyers’ preferences, shopping habits, and behaviours often vary depending on their life stage. In our latest research, we dove into the segment of car buyers who are parents – individuals who have children under 18 living in their household – to understand how they shop and what’s important to them.

Below, we reveal three important ways parents differ from buyers without children to help dealers win this audience today and long-term.

Parents are more open-minded about brands

More than two-thirds (68%) of parents said they were open to several brands of automobiles versus 63% of households without kids. This means most parents care more about factors like a vehicle’s safety, reliability, and features than brand. For dealers, this presents a great opportunity to sway parents toward in-stock vehicles that meet their needs. Build their trust early in the process by learning what their priorities are and then helping them find a vehicle that suits them.

Parents are significantly more interested in digital retail

Though most (60%) parents still find the test drive to be an important part of the process, 67% would prefer to do more of the car buying process from home, compared to 54% of households without kids.

This can mean offering the ability to purchase a vehicle entirely online, but it can also be as simple as making sure your dealership has access to tools and services that allow for steps like online loan prequalification, deal-building, deposits, and vehicle delivery to be done online. When you let car buyers shop the way they want, you’re sure to see the sales start rolling in.

Parents are more likely to be adding additional vehicles

Whether it’s because of expected life changes or buying a vehicle for a child, parents are more likely to be adding additional vehicles to their household. Among recent four-month buyers, 37% of parents say they plan to buy/lease again in the next 5-10 years. Comparatively, only about one-quarter (26%) of households without kids plan to buy/lease again. This emphasises the importance of providing a stand-out experience – to all buyers, but especially parents – that will keep them in your pipeline. And don’t forget about them once they drive off your lot. Make sure they’re included in your email marketing campaigns about service deals and vehicle sales, so your dealership is fresh in their minds when they’re ready to buy again.

These insights underscore the importance of understanding your audience so you can sell more effectively to buyers. For more information about reaching different types of buyers, contact your rep today.

Topics: buyer insights, car buying, consumer insights, parents